synthetic media or an object that never existed

"Installation in Weiß"

The Studio 45 cbm of the Kunsthalle Baden-Baden regularly offers young artists the opportunity to present their work. It is noticeable that many of these artists, most of whom work quite experimentally and often with a lot of wit and wink, reflect in their works how electronic media and virtual worlds change reality and, above all, the perception of this reality.

With his installation "synthetic media or an object that never existed", which opens on Friday evening and can be seen until 29 March, Martin Wühler, born in Erfurt in 1983, even questions the very existence of this reality. He does not even exclude his own existence: "This person does not exist: Martin Wühler" (This person does not exist: Martin Wühler) is written on the flyer for the exhibition, the text of which is limited to a series of terms from the virtual world of new media, in addition to information on the duration of the exhibition.

What can be seen in the room in the Kunsthalle has, first of all, a concrete sensual appeal. There is a mountain or hill heaped up, made of bark mulch dyed white. Spread out on it and predominantly, with striking exceptions, objects also in white can be seen, some of which are worked mementos and some sculptures made with the 3D printer, the traces of their creation process still written on their faces. Hendrik Bündge, who curates the exhibition, calls the mountain a "graveyard of devotional objects", whose visual appeal is based not least on the striking, deliberate spotlighting of individual details and objects.

The reference to the virtual world becomes clear when looking at a kind of map that is hung on the wall next to the installation. On it, the individual objects on the mountain are named with terms from the world of the internet, which at first seem to have nothing whatsoever to do with the objects themselves. There is no longer any reliance on alleged facts: Are the objects real? Are they manipulated? Are they fictitious? One does not know. You don't even know if the artist exists at all, because as he writes on the flyer: "This person does not exist: Martin Wühler"

The exhibition will open on Friday, 17 January at 7 pm. After a welcome by Kunsthalle director Luisa Heese, curator Hendrik Bündge will introduce visitors to the installation.

Karl-Heinz Fischer